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When Can I Resume Exercising Following Breast Surgery?

Whether you’ve undergone breast augmentation surgery, breast augmentation revision, breast reduction, breast lift, or breast tuberous correction, you’re probably wondering when the best time is to get back to your fitness regimen.   

Staying in shape should be a part of everybody’s health and wellness goals.  Undergoing any sort of cosmetic surgery, including breast surgery, shouldn’t hinder your health habits.  However, breast surgery is still surgery, and to make sure your body heals quickly with desirable aesthetic results, you’ll want to take it slow when getting back to your sweat sessions.  According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, it’s advised that patients refrain from strenuous physical activities, such as heavy weight lifting and high-intensity interval training (HIIT), for at least 4-6 weeks following breast surgery.  At the four-week mark, most patients can resume most forms of exercise, save for heavy lifting.  Most patients are completely healed six weeks following any sort of breast surgery and can usually get back to the swing of things altogether.  Here is a general timeline you can follow to help make a smooth progression from chilling on the couch to heating up your next hot yoga class:

  • First Two Weeks

Engage in light, low-impact walking to boost circulation and prevent blood clots BUT refrain from ANY strenuous movements and heavy lifting.  Use this initial recovery period to take it easy and help promote speedy wound healing and optimal breast implant settling.  

  • Two Weeks

Two weeks following your breast surgery, you can begin doing more intense cardio workouts, such as power walking on the treadmill or uphill walking and/or hiking outdoors.

  • Three Weeks

Once you’ve reached the three-week mark following your breast surgery, you can begin reintroducing leg-based, lower-body movements, such as squats, lunges, light jogging, and cycling.  However, stay away from the heavyweights for another few weeks.  

  • Four-Six Weeks

At your doctors’ discretion, you may be able to finally resume all forms of exercise, including heavy weight lifting and over-the-head moves.  



Additional Tips to Greenlighting Your Fitness Routine
If you received breast implants that were surgically placed beneath the chest muscle, performing push-ups and over-the-head exercise movements should be avoided to prevent dislodging of the implants as they start the settling process.  Before the 4-6week mark, avoid ANY heaving lifting, including children, to prevent negatively impacting freshly placed implants and susceptible incisions.  Abdominal exercises that put excessive strain on the neck and chest muscles should be avoided until after the six-week point.  As a rule, if something hurts or causes discomfort, immediately stop and grant your body additional healing time.  Everybody is different and responds differently to surgery, including recovery time.  Your best bet is to consult with your doctor to determine your best course of action when getting back to the gym and remember to wear a properly fitted bra that is snug and supportive to promote healing and the most beautiful results.  Try not to focus too much on getting back to your fitness routine.  The gym is not going anywhere and will welcome you when you’re completely ready.


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Contact our office for more information about how to treat gynecomastia. Dr. Jaime Schwartz, a board-certified plastic surgeon, will talk to you about your needs and help you achieve your aesthetic goals.